WNBA star Brittney Griner, who has been detained in Russia for over five months, was found guilty on drug charges in a Moscow-area court Thursday. She was then sentenced to nine years in prison 

The judge found that Griner had criminal intent and said she was guilty of smuggling and storing illegal drugs. 

Griner, a 31-year-old Houston native who plays professional basketball for the Phoenix Mercury, was detained on Feb.  

17 at Sheremetyevo International Airport in Khimki as she returned to Russia to play during the WNBA's offseason after she was accused of having vape cartridges containing hashish oil, 

The two-time Olympic gold medalist, who appeared in court Thursday for the final hearing in her trial, 

was facing up to 10 years in prison although 9 1/2 years was the maximum sentence with time served. Griner has a right to appeal 

but a person with knowledge of the booking confirmed the fight’s plans to MMA Junkie on Wednesday 

Griner's attorneys, Marina Blagovolina and Alexander Boykov, told reporters outside of the courthouse in Moscow on Thursday that they plan to file an appeal. 

U.S. President Joe Biden slammed Russia in a statement on Thursday morning following Griner's sentencing and called on Russia to "release her immediately." 

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